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Impact of gender and culture on audit judgements
thesisposted on 2022-03-28, 16:05 authored by Batul Towfique Hasan
New mandates issued by international auditing regulators call for an all-inclusive approach in making materiality judgements, which need to take into account both quantitative and qualitative information. Auditors are being directed away from the tendency to perform 'check-the-box' audits to more circumstance oriented audit judgements. This study examines the impact of the inherent factors of gender and national culture of auditors and how they affect audit judgements on materiality. In particular, this study provides an understanding of whether auditors are using both qualitative and quantitative evidence in their audit judgements regarding materiality, instead of solely using prescribed materiality percentages. A survey was conducted among final year undergraduate and postgraduate accounting students enrolled at Macquarie University. The results indicate substantial differences in the judgements made by male and female students. Males exhibit a higher preference for quantitative information as a primary basis for making materiality judgements while females show a greater preference for qualitative information. Furthermore, the results also provide strong support for the notion that materiality judgements vary due to culture. Differences in judgements between Chinese and Australian students were found, with Chinese students exhibiting higher preference for quantitative information as a primary basis for making materiality judgements and Australian students preferring more qualitative information. Lastly, Chinese students exhibited more conservatism in their materiality judgements than their Australian counterparts. Overall, our findings have implications for standard-setters, regulatory bodies, other policy makers and audit firms in their efforts to achieve improved audit quality through consistency in audit judgements.